Renowned international artist Cliff Garten has transformed what could have been an ordinary parking garage at The Vermont residences on Wilshire Boulevard in LA, into an extraordinary new work of art. His new sculpture, titled Los Angeles Opens Its Heart of Compassion, comprises a 20ft- high, suspended sculpture and transparent 75ft by 45ft, undulating, illuminated screen that graces the parking garage façade at this new 464-unit, luxury apartment complex in Koreatown. The laser-cut aluminum sculpture represents a lotus flower - a nod to the Korean community. Visible from a major transit hub across the street, the US$1.6m installation has elevated the garage and the plaza it fronts to a neighbourhood destination.

Visual studio Lightswitch worked closely with Garten to design the lighting for the piece. After creating mock-ups based on detailed and exact pre-visualisations, Lightswitch partnered with Martin Professional and systems integrator 4 Wall, from the specification phase through to the final focus, to make sure that the lighting matched the mock-ups.

Lit from the front, side and back with lensed, wash fixtures, the undulating screen is washed with vibrant, saturated colour, while the screen provides the perfect backdrop for the sculpture, which is precisely illuminated from the front, side and back with crisp, white light. Great care was taken to ensure that no light spilled from the sculpture to the wall and vice versa, maintaining colour purity for each element.

Thanks to Lightswitch’s use of pre-visualisation, Garten was able to understand and revise the design before the lighting was ordered. By effectively communicating with the fixture manufacturer and systems integrator, the Lightswitch team could seamlessly execute Garten’s vision without any surprises during the installation. The resulting combination of art, architecture and lighting has created a signature identity for The Vermont and has transformed a functional structure into public symbol that the whole neighbourhood can enjoy.